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Basic Facial Cream / Moisturizer Recipe (First post!)

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Nat

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Hi Everyone! I'm new here. I'm scouring the Internet for a very basic lotion/cream recipe but I am coming up short. I am hoping to make it with aloe and shea butter. (Very advanced, I know XD) All I need to know is how many cups of carrier oils, aloe, shea butter, and emulsifying wax I would need. I'm sure I could find the percentages for the preservatives and essential oils I want to use. If you could break it down in cups (or teaspoons/tablespoons) as the means of measuring, I'd greatly appreciate it.

Thank you so much! :) I look forward to any help out there.

(I hope I'm doing this right...)
 

cmzaha

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First off we do not measure in cups and teaspoons. You need to work by weights and percentages. Check this website, this gal is pretty much the guru of lotion making and has a lot of beginner recipes. http://swiftcraftymonkey.blogspot.com/ Making lotion is not simply throwing together ingredients and having a great safe product. I have a shelf full of failed recipes along with a couple shelves of successful recipes. It takes time to make a good lotion.
 

Nat

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I appreciate your response. I was simply wondering if anyone had any experience working with this form of measurement. I respect those who have worked long and hard to achieve successful recipes but by no means was I planning on "throwing together ingredients"...

Anyone else?
 

Misschief

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Hey Nat... first off, welcome to the Soapmaking Forum.

We all have to start somewhere, right? Here's a cream that I've been making for some time. I've made all kinds of variations. One of them is a fave of mine, as well as that of my daughter and my upstairs neighbour. I make it a couple of times a year for the two of them. My daughter loves it! (Truth be told, she loves pretty much every product I make). As long as you store it in the fridge and you're only using it yourself (as in not planning on selling), it's a recipe that works. And it uses cups as measures.

http://www.motherearthnews.com/natural-health/body-care/homemade-face-cream-ze0z1310zpit
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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I think that a large part of what Carolyn was saying is that the knowledge of "why" is a cornerstone of what we do. Taking a recipe as it is and just making it gives you no information about why the amounts are what they are and what changing it would do.

Which is why the most helpful thing anyone can do is linking to swiftcraftmonkey- there are recipes to follow but she also explains why things are there and what alternatives would be and what to consider.
 

cmzaha

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Hey Nat... first off, welcome to the Soapmaking Forum.

We all have to start somewhere, right? Here's a cream that I've been making for some time. I've made all kinds of variations. One of them is a fave of mine, as well as that of my daughter and my upstairs neighbour. I make it a couple of times a year for the two of them. My daughter loves it! (Truth be told, she loves pretty much every product I make). As long as you store it in the fridge and you're only using it yourself (as in not planning on selling), it's a recipe that works. And it uses cups as measures.

http://www.motherearthnews.com/natural-health/body-care/homemade-face-cream-ze0z1310zpit
I am sorry but I would not advise anyone making a lotion without learning how to preserve. It is just plain dangerous. Food spoils in fridges and so will lotion. I certainly would not risk giving it to anyone. When learning to make lotion a person needs to know enough to at least do it right. Preserving is NOT an Option it is a necessity. People have died from contaminated lotions, actually happened in a hospital.

My favorite Aunt always told me, "if you are going to do something do it right! Or at least keep at it until you get it right. This was pertaining to sewing, but it also applies to most anything a person does.
 

powderpink

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I'm just wondering, but why do you want to work with cups and tablespoons?

I'm not trying to be rude here nor am I trying to downplay your intelligence but...
Does working with numbers scare/intimidate you? Because we can help you out with that, on here.
Or is it that you don't own a scale and just can't be bothered to invest in one?

Either way, you can get pretty cheap precision scales from eBay (which are great for measuring those preservatives -and actives, which you may want to experiment with since you're making a face cream- as often you'll need something like 0.5% which is basically a tiny drop you wouldn't be able to get right measuring with teaspoons or some such thing, and just a tad too much of some preservatives can make your skin burn like the Dickens..and too little will make it go moldy too fast...so you do want to get the right measurement...omitting it is not an option unless you want scary bacteria doing not so fun stuff to you).

I would seriously consider changing your method if I were you and just buckle down and get some scales.
Otherwise I would advice you to stick to anhydrous recipes using *only* oils and butters until you're ready to use/invest in scales.

And I agree with a poster above, please check out swiftcraftymonkey's website. She has a wealth of information for beginners including recipes for face creams.
 

Nat

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I'm just wondering, but why do you want to work with cups and tablespoons?

I'm not trying to be rude here nor am I trying to downplay your intelligence but...
Does working with numbers scare/intimidate you? Because we can help you out with that, on here.
Or is it that you don't own a scale and just can't be bothered to invest in one?

Either way, you can get pretty cheap precision scales from eBay (which are great for measuring those preservatives -and actives, which you may want to experiment with since you're making a face cream- as often you'll need something like 0.5% which is basically a tiny drop you wouldn't be able to get right measuring with teaspoons or some such thing, and just a tad too much of some preservatives can make your skin burn like the Dickens..and too little will make it go moldy too fast...so you do want to get the right measurement...omitting it is not an option unless you want scary bacteria doing not so fun stuff to you).

I would seriously consider changing your method if I were you and just buckle down and get some scales.
Otherwise I would advice you to stick to anhydrous recipes using *only* oils and butters until you're ready to use/invest in scales.

And I agree with a poster above, please check out swiftcraftymonkey's website. She has a wealth of information for beginners including recipes for face creams.

Thank you! That's exactly it! I don't own a scale. And I was hoping that there would be a way to do it without one! But it seems as though it's time to go back to the drawing board and start by purchasing one. Thank you for all your help!
 

Misschief

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I stand by my post. When you're just beginning to learn something and you don't have anything but very basic equipment and you don't know if you're even going to like doing it, there is nothing wrong with making a simple product from scratch for yourself. It's how I got into this whole crazy world of bath and body stuff. Over the years, and with a lot of reading, I have learned a lot. Once I knew I could make a very basic cream, I moved on from there. I agree that any skin product should be made using weight rather than volume. I agree that there should be a preservative in it. I agree that swiftcraftymonkey is a great resource and training site. However, had I come across her site when I was just starting out, I would have been so overwhelmed, I never would have made anything.

Rosemary's recipe is a lovely one. Yes, it has a much shorter shelf life because there are no preservatives in it. Yes, it uses cups and teaspoons. There is no reason to jump into this world of skin care with both feet when you only want to test the water.
 

Dahila

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Misschief that is an balm not cream, and will do a lot of mess on sensitive skin. I started to make my lotion from Susan's blog. You must measure, how the heck do you know how much preservative to add?????????
Please do not tell people to practice unsafe process
OVer the years you exposed yourself to mold and bacterias, doing it this way. You must be lucky that you had not got sick.
Making lotion is simple but there are some rules and you do not use aloe vera as replacement for water, it can be only some aloe vera.
I had a few lotions fails but not due the lack of preservation.
I can not believe in your post, :(
 
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Misschief

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Misschief that is an balm not cream, :(
Balms do not contain liquid. This recipe does (water or rose water as well as aloe). The link says it doesn't need refrigeration. I do refrigerate it and recommend to anyone I share it with that they refrigerate it as well. I've been making and using this cream for more than 10 years and have never had issues.

For anyone wanting a completely natural skin care regime, it is a perfectly reasonable recipe. I don't want to be applying preservatives to my skin. Sorry.

Having said all that, I do follow some of swiftcraftymonkey's recipes for some of my skin care products. I do not, nor will I ever, sell my products. They are for my personal use only, as well as a few close family members and friends (2-3 people only) and they're told to store it in the fridge.
 

Dahila

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Misschef keep doing it, life will give you answers, I keep my fingers crossed that you are going to be ok. I really do,
 

cmzaha

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Balms do not contain liquid. This recipe does (water or rose water as well as aloe). The link says it doesn't need refrigeration. I do refrigerate it and recommend to anyone I share it with that they refrigerate it as well. I've been making and using this cream for more than 10 years and have never had issues.

For anyone wanting a completely natural skin care regime, it is a perfectly reasonable recipe. I don't want to be applying preservatives to my skin. Sorry.

Having said all that, I do follow some of swiftcraftymonkey's recipes for some of my skin care products. I do not, nor will I ever, sell my products. They are for my personal use only, as well as a few close family members and friends (2-3 people only) and they're told to store it in the fridge.
If you want to risk your own self that is fine, but when you start putting others to risk and telling newbies that this is a good recipe, you are being extremely irresponsible and unethical in my opinion. Maybe you have been lucky for 10 yrs, but what happens when it fails, and you have given a batch to someone not realizing it has gone bad. What happens when this person becomes extremely ill or ends up with a severe bacterial infection due to someone being afraid of 1% or less of a proven preservative...Like Dahila, I have had failures but not due to no preservative. I just hope you have extremely good insurance and just a little note about insurance, even insurance through the Guild does not cover mold. Susan's tutorials for beginners is not hard to understand.
 

powderpink

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I stand by my post. When you're just beginning to learn something and you don't have anything but very basic equipment and you don't know if you're even going to like doing it, there is nothing wrong with making a simple product from scratch for yourself
In my opinion, if you want to make a cream it probably means you have a blender/stick blender at your disposal, at the least, which along with a scale should fall under the basics for lotion making in my opinion...and if you can afford ingredients for a cream, I don't really see what's stopping anyone from investing in a scale. Especially when you can get them for rather cheap from ebay.

Here's (one of) the ones I use:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/100g-0-01g-...523870?hash=item1e9d90af5e:g:7M8AAOSwcwhVNgQA

Here's one that weighs up to 300g at a time:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/300g-Intell...141138?hash=item1c6f0bfdd2:g:d6IAAOSwi0RX0UxP

Both are just over 7 bucks, so in my opinion, even if you don't think you'll continue after your first bacth, it's not that big a loss ( and you can always use the scale for other things). You may wan to invest in something sturdier later on, but for a beginner this works.


If you don't have a stick blender, you can make small batches (up to 100g, though I've pushed it to 200g at times) of light creams (so light on the butters) with a cheap milk frother you can get at Ikea or dollar store type shops.




I also feel like the "everything natural is good" train of thought is kind of a fallacy (just like the "everyhting synthetic is bad" thought).

E.g. cadmium... you deheeeefinitely dont want that on your skin or anywhere near your mouth (I wear gloves when I paint with oil paints containing this).
And if preservatives scare you because "nasty chemicals", I think these days you can also find ECO-cert preservatives, which seem to be a lot less agressive etc. (e.g. Leucidal and Natapress), though they do have a shorter shelflife and are slightly more difficult to work with.


But this is why I'd advise beginners to stick to anhydrous products first (for the longest time I was intimidated by preservatives/emulsifiers etc. too).
You can make a pretty awesome whipped body butter using some lighs oils, butters and a handmixer.
 

cherrycoke216

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I have bought a UK indie handmade brand's Cleasing balm. And its ingredient list is pretty much like the recipe here. Except for it has ecocert preservative and without exotic butters.

My question is, how is it not separate without emulsifier and With beeswax to combine water and soft oil only?

It's a texture like custard, but it did weep oil / ooze out oil once I started using in summer. ( subtropical weather here ) Is it because she use just a tiny bit of water? Or the cold weather of UK so it won't ooze out oil?
 

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I have bought a UK indie handmade brand's Cleasing balm. And its ingredient list is pretty much like the recipe here. Except for it has ecocert preservative and without exotic butters.

My question is, how is it not separate without emulsifier and With beeswax to combine water and soft oil only?

It's a texture like custard, but it did weep oil / ooze out oil once I started using in summer. ( subtropical weather here ) Is it because she use just a tiny bit of water? Or the cold weather of UK so it won't ooze out oil?
Beeswax is not emulsifier and there will be always separation. weeping oil or water is simply seperation :)
 

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Dahlia is right. The Mother Earth News (MEN) recipe has no emulsifier, so it is likely to separate (weep). The author even talks about that at the end of her article -- how to deal with separation.

Lanolin is able to bind up some water, but at 1/4 tsp in the MEN recipe, there's not remotely enough lanolin to absorb all the water-based liquid. The recipe is counting on the cocoa butter (or coconut oil), beeswax, and lanolin to thicken the product enough to not weep ... at least not right away. It will be more stable with cocoa butter vs coconut oil and if it's kept cool. Likewise for the Indie product.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Which is why I also think doing it right first time is worthwhile. Making a "cream-lite" that have no preservatives or one with no emulsifier and then having it go funny can be harder for a newbie than just making a proper lotion from the off.

It's like someone trying to make soap but using a bad recipe - it might be cheaper as they have the oils on hand, but then they get a bad impression of what soap can be like because of it
 

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Which is why I also think doing it right first time is worthwhile. Making a "cream-lite" that have no preservatives or one with no emulsifier and then having it go funny can be harder for a newbie than just making a proper lotion from the off.

It's like someone trying to make soap but using a bad recipe - it might be cheaper as they have the oils on hand, but then they get a bad impression of what soap can be like because of it
Best reason hands down for making a lotion with preservatives and proper emulsifiers IMO. I do not have many recipes under my belt but the few lotions, save one of my current batches, that I have made, they all have not had the separation issues that beeswax sans borax presents. I also have faith that my lotions at the least are safe enough to let other people use and I don't even have to refrigerate it.

A preservative is only 1% of a lotion recipe- that little bit of "evil" is the best chance you have against the natural nasties that can be partying in a unpreserved lotion.
 
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